Di, 18.06.2024

Solence - Live in Karlsruhe

Die Stadtmitte#18-06-solence-6985405575688033431-n.jpeg

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No matter where we come from, music draws us together and bonds us. For as much as SOLENCE sonically conjoin elements of metal, electronic, alternative, and pop, the Swedish group also appeal to an expansive swath of personalities with a universal message. Equally suitable for the mosh pit or Coachella, the band—Markus Videsäter [vocals], David “Viking” Vikingsson [drums], David Strääf [guitar], and Johan Swärd [keys]—rally around a familial energy meant to be shared as loudly as possible. After quietly generating north of 200 million streams and counting, they welcome everyone closer on their third full-length offering and Hopeless Records debut, _hope is a cult_, and more to come.
“We want to build up this family around positivity, hope, and the belief you can change things,” notes Markus. “We want you to forget everything that bothers you when you listen to this album. If we’re doing our job, audiences feel like they’re a part of it. When you go to a SOLENCE show, you have a good time, so hope is a cult for us.”
As the story goes, the band formed in high school in Norrkoping, Sweden with Johan and Viking. “They’re all one year older than me, and David got me to go to their school and eventually join the band,” recalls Markus. “It was all a part of his scheme!” In between writing and recording for the band, David and Markus made waves in pop music, working on a myriad of projects for award-winning multiplatinum megastars. As a songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist, David’s discography grew to include “Don’t Cry For Me” by Alok, Martin Jensen, and Jason Derulo in addition to multiple cuts on Bebe Rexha’s Better Mistakes and more. Meanwhile, Markus collaborated with the likes of Bahjat, Violet Skies, and Nova Miller, to name a few. SOLENCE emerged on the global stage with Brothers [2019] followed by Direction [2020] and Deafening [2021]. Along the way, fan favorites “Heaven” and “Good F**king Music” each surpassed 19 million Spotify streams as “Animal In Me” eclipsed 21 million Spotify streams. In addition to praise from Alternative Press and more, Outburn hailed Deafening as “a watershed work of possibility, perseverance, and positivity.” Leveling up in 2022, they expanded the vision like never before for what would become _hope is a cult_.
“This was our most thought-out and deliberate body of work from beginning to end,” Markus explains. “We narrowed it down from over 150 ideas into one piece of art as 12 songs.”
“In the beginning, Viking, David, and I really tried to push ourselves as instrumentalists and write difficult music,” observes Johan. “Markus added simplicity and structure, so it’s a really cool blend. I feel like we’ve brought this to another level now.”
The band initially bulldozed a path for the album with the deluge of an opener “Rain Down” and “Demons,” reeling in millions of streams. Meanwhile, the seven-minute “Blood Sweat Tears” illuminated the scope of SOLENCE. Acoustic guitar and a delicate murmur give way to an electronic-laden bridge and dazzling prog-style crescendo uplifted by a soaring promise, “We will give our blood, sweat, tears.”
“The lyrics embody everything we’ve done up to this point and stand for,” reveals Markus. “If you feel like you can do something, you probably can. It’s encouragement and motivation. It’s our anthem.”
“When we started out, our influences were very progressive,” adds Viking. “We drifted away from it a bit, but this song let us celebrate that side of us and show where we come from.”
Then, there’s “nuBlood.” A snappy riff sets the tone as Markus ignites a chantable chorus, “We need some new blood,” countered by a warbling robotic vocal.
“It’s all about being reborn and finding new energy,” adds the frontman. “You’re removing all of the old shit that might bother you. If you want to change something, you just need to get some new blood pumping.”
“Waves” pops off as one of the group’s catchiest gems powered by an unshakable high-register hook and glimmering keys. On “Antidote,” an anxious, yet airy soundscape underscores ethereal vocal delivery as Markus pleads, “Doctor doctor, please give me medicine. My eyes can barely see, so please give me a pill.” The tension culminates on a distortion-boosted refrain.
“During the Pandemic, there was all of this screen time, and we were stuck in a bubble,” sighs Markus. “You started to get numb the longer it went on, because there weren’t any new experiences. You just want to feel something.”
The group lock into a galloping groove offset by a head-nodding riff and hummable synths on “Best For You.” Conceived during a session over Discord, it illuminates their knack for an ironclad melody.
“It has so much energy,” notes Johan. “It’s a bit melancholy, but it’s also weirdly positive.”
In the end, the SOLENCE family thrives like never before on _hope is a cult_.
“We’re very excited to build this new chapter with fans,” Markus leaves off. “We can’t wait to play live and travel. We’re creating a new rock experience. We want to play arenas. We want to become one of the biggest bands in the world. It starts with the family though. As much as we want to create good fucking music, we want to have a good fucking time.”